Christopher Isiguzo in Enugu
The Federal Government has vowed to tackle the problems posed by climate change in every part of the country even as it inaugurated ecological fund intervention projects executed at the Federal College of Education Eha-Amufu (FCEE) in Isiuzo Local Government Area of Enugu State.
The projects, which include internal roads covering four kilometres, soil erosion and flood control was inaugurated by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama.
The minister said the intervention was part of the quest to deliver on the promises of the Federal Government.
â€œThe origin of these projects was an appeal made by the school authorities and the federal government made an immediate response. This is evident of the importance this administration attaches to development in our educational institutions,â€ he said.
The minister said colleges of education were one of the most important pillars the current administration had to support in order to make the country great. He said there was need to make life attractive for the teeming youths in the rural areas in order to stem rural-urban migration.
Onyeama said the government was well aware of the challenges of climate change and was determined to address its effects.
â€œWe have seen the counter effects of climate change and the challenges it poses to our people. How to support every community faced with this challenge is the priority of this government,â€ Onyeama said.
In an address of welcome, the Provost of the institution, Prof. Benjamin Mbah described the project intervention by the Federal Government as a miracle.
Mbah said the projects were the first of such intervention since the start of academic activities in the institution in 1981. He said the actualisation of the projects had saved staff members and students from the hazards of annual flooding that had wreaked havoc in the institution over the years.
â€œWhat we experienced then was walking unsteadily, sinking and falling on the clayey, muddy road. Sometimes, vehicles were trapped and the journey ends on foot,â€ he said.
The provost, however, said the execution of the projects was just the beginning of the jobs that needed to be done to salvage the institution.
Mbah said the amount of flood that passed through the institution was phenomenal, adding that efforts needed to be made to put it to good use. He said the emphasis on the diversification of the economy would be boosted in the area if the aspect of the flood water was used for agricultural production, adding that Eha-Amufu was a major rice producing area.
â€œA very important aspect of the jobs that still need to be done is the harnessing of the flood water that crosses this institution. If we can harvest the water for irrigation farming and artificial pond we can grow fishes here and get our youths employed,â€ he said.
Mbah appealed to the government to do the remaining projects in the school, adding that they had requested for the construction of 12km of internal roads.
The project supervisor, Mr. Gabriel Deage said the projects were executed in accordance with international standard. Deage said though they encountered several challenges in the course of doing the jobs but the projects were guaranteed to last for 20 years.
He said over 14 culverts were done along with big drainages and asphalting of a total of 4km of roads.